Since March 2019, French law directs government agencies like CNES with industrial and commercial status and employing 50 people or more to put in place a system for assessing their gender pay gap. The gender equality index is a score out of 100 and the required minimum is 75/100. This index is calculated on the basis of five indicators:
⦁ Mean pay gap
⦁ Pay rise gap
⦁ Promotion gap
⦁ Pay rise for employees returning from maternity leave
⦁ Gender distribution of the top ten highest-paid employees
For its 2019 index, CNES scored 94/100. This improved score is related to the higher number of women among the agency’s top ten highest-paid employees, a domain where CNES still needs to progress to improve its index—a challenge given the specific nature of the space sector. As required by law, the agency calculated and published the index on its website before 1 March and communicated it, along with the detail of the indicators on which it is based, to its Central Economic and Employee Relations Committee (CCSE) on Wednesday 4 March.
Commenting on the announcement of this result, CNES President Jean-Yves Le Gall said: “Our goal is to be a standard-setter in workplace gender equality. Achieving gender parity has long been a priority for CNES and we have obtained very good results. Our first agency-wide agreement in this domain dates back to 2004, since when almost all of our corporate governance structures have achieved parity or are close to doing so. Today, CNES is pursuing a continuous improvement approach in the areas of gender diversity, equal pay, career development and work-life balance. We must harness all of our energies to consolidate this approach through a team effort and meet the challenges facing us constructively, creatively and above all fairly.”